Eric Reed, the trainer of Kentucky Derby long shot winner Rich Strike, is facing criticism after he dodged a question from an ESPN reporter about a sexist slur he tweeted about Vice President Kamala Harris.
Reed made the remark in response to a post from former Trump administration official Sebastian Gorka, who had questioned Harris' qualifications, to which Reed replied he'd heard Harris "is good on her knees!"
But when asked about the offensive tweet, Reed said he didn't "know anything about it," he's more concerned about "this great horse and how he's helping everybody. He added there are "haters out there" though he did not elaborate further.
You can hear what Reed said in the video below.
Eric Reed was asked about this tweet on ESPN just now. Didn\u2019t seem interested in answering. https://twitter.com/BklynBckstretch/status/1523343017272217600\u00a0\u2026pic.twitter.com/vlaOqpfXvr— Ben Koo (@Ben Koo) 1652293376
“I haven’t seen anything about it. Haven’t been told about it. I don’t know what’s going on out there."
"I’m more concerned with Richie and what’s going on with us, and this great horse, and how much he’s helping everybody."
"So, there’s haters out there, and that’s about how I’m gonna leave something like that.”
@daddyrabbit74, the Twitter account the tweet originated from, says it belongs to the “Owner of Mercury Equine Center,” which is Reed. And according to the Twitter bio, the account holder is a “horse trainer” and “Reagan conservative." The account has since been set to private.
Some have jumped to Reed's defense.
ESPN couldn\u2019t make the Kentucky Derby about race, so they switched to politics.https://www.outkick.com/espn-tries-to-cancel-rich-strikes-owner-over-months-old-tweet-about-kamala-harris/\u00a0\u2026— ConservoDad (@ConservoDad) 1652357272
ESPN (owned by Disney) is now Thought Policing horse trainers to ensure their politics are properly aligned.https://nypost.com/2022/05/11/rich-strike-trainer-eric-reed-asked-about-alleged-kamala-harris-tweet/?utm_campaign=iphone_nyp&utm_source=twitter_app\u00a0\u2026— \ud83c\uddfa\ud83c\uddf8\ud83c\udde8\ud83c\uddfa Jim B\u00f6barino \ud83c\udde8\ud83c\uddfa\ud83c\uddfa\ud83c\uddf8 (@\ud83c\uddfa\ud83c\uddf8\ud83c\udde8\ud83c\uddfa Jim B\u00f6barino \ud83c\udde8\ud83c\uddfa\ud83c\uddfa\ud83c\uddf8) 1652311954
He\u2019s not lying.https://nypost.com/2022/05/11/rich-strike-trainer-eric-reed-asked-about-alleged-kamala-harris-tweet/?utm_campaign=iphone_nyp&utm_source=twitter_app\u00a0\u2026— Dr. Interracial \ud83c\uddfa\ud83c\uddf8 (@Dr. Interracial \ud83c\uddfa\ud83c\uddf8) 1652311723
ESPN is \u201cinvestigating\u201d Rich Strike\u2019s owner for a possible Kamala Harris joke\n\nWhat a joke!https://twitter.com/i/broadcasts/1DXxyDaPokNJM\u00a0\u2026— Dan Dakich (@Dan Dakich) 1652361283
But not everyone is buying his explanation.
He tweeted something about the VP months ago and has a Trump photo on his wall.\nI'm missing out on what any of that has to do with the Kentucky Derby.https://twitter.com/bkoo/status/1524455029763149825\u00a0\u2026— Brad Slager \ud83c\udf78\ud83e\udd43\ud83c\udf7a\ud83c\udf99 Lifetime Subscriber to CNN+ (@Brad Slager \ud83c\udf78\ud83e\udd43\ud83c\udf7a\ud83c\udf99 Lifetime Subscriber to CNN+) 1652363077
Haters out there?.. dude you said the VP is only good for oral sex I am being kind with oral .. no haters bro.. you are a damn clown and I hope your horse runs well.. I mean that (doubt it) but I hope for the sport you are in Belmont with a chancehttps://twitter.com/bkoo/status/1524455029763149825\u00a0\u2026— Chris\ud83c\uddef\ud83c\uddf2 (@Chris\ud83c\uddef\ud83c\uddf2) 1652314298
Oh, so Rich Strike\u2019s trainer Eric Reed says VP Kamala Harris\u2019 top qualification is \u201cHeard she\u2019s good on her knees!\u201d\n\nSomeone reset the \u201cDays I Feel Good About Horseracing\u201d clock back to 0.— Cardinal Laws (@Cardinal Laws) 1652363161
Good reason to root for every other horse in the Preakness besides Rich Strike: Eric Reed's sick tweet about the Vice-President of the United States @daddyrabbit1964 \nhttps://www.huffpost.com/entry/eric-reed-kamala-harris-tweet_n_627cd1ade4b06ce0a1b27b58?utm_campaign=share_twitter&ncid=engmodushpmg00000004\u00a0\u2026 via @HuffPostPol— Dan Rodricks, Baltimore Sun, News Guild (@Dan Rodricks, Baltimore Sun, News Guild) 1652360204
\u201cDoesn\u2019t know anything about it\u201d from the man who locked his account within hours of winning the biggest race of his life.— Teresa Genaro (@Teresa Genaro) 1652299752
I could say a lot here, but I'll keep it short: Say what you mean, mean what you say. If you don't want to be asked about it, maybe don't hit "send."https://twitter.com/bkoo/status/1524455029763149825\u00a0\u2026— Andrew Champagne (@Andrew Champagne) 1652305604
Ban him from EVERY track in the country!!!!\nDon\u2019t let him ever see his horse again!!!\nProtest (peacefully of course) at his house forever!!!!!https://twitter.com/nypost/status/1524495783906660353\u00a0\u2026— Mike Safo (@Mike Safo) 1652308458
Gross. Ruined the win of the Kentucky Derby for me. And Eric Reed on the Sebastian Gorka show makes it worse.— Patti (@Patti) 1652365825
Harris is no stranger to dehumanizing attacks or misogynistic commentary.
Former President Donald Trump–whose photo is displayed in the background of Reed's home per the ESPN interview–has referred to her as “totally unlikable” and a “communist.”
Fox News personality Tucker Carlson, meanwhile, has called Harris "a transparent fraud, from her phony inflected accent to her synthetic bio to her featherweight work history," disparaging the work she did when she was the District Attorney of San Francisco and the Attorney General of California.